Tennis has always been one of my favorite activities. Growing up, I played a variety of sports, but none of them really grabbed me like this gentlemen’s sport. I played throughout my high school years and needless to say, I loved every minute of it. Looking back, I see tennis as being more than just a game in which I participated; I see how the impact this game has had on me and the formation of my individuality.
Unlike any other game, tennis really tests the mind of the player. The player is constantly assessing the next move, and how to successfully win that point. I have found that over time, life is about critical movies – choosing the right paths and gaining the best possible outcome. I remember constantly thinking about where I was going to put the ball on the court, how I was going to hit it, and how my opponent would react to my strokes. For me, I started to look at the happenings, my surroundings and the choices I would make to get me where I wanted to go in my life.
Tennis teaches the individual to have gentleman-like etiquette. My coach taught me to be a gentleman on, as well as, off the court. She always made sure we shook the hands of our opponents before and after each match. There was a level of respect shown to one another, regardless of being opponents on the court. My teammates and I treated each other like family during the season by watching one another’s matches and offering support and encouragement to them whether they won or lost. It was a philosophy of being a gentleman. Learning these gentlemanly gestures has stuck with me. With this outlook, one is well respected by his peers through the ups and downs of life.
Tennis players always seem to find their own signature style. While I struggled to find the right strokes and the serve that made me competitive, like most players, I found a game that worked for me, and continued to improve upon it when I played. In all facets of life we find that we evolve. As far as my style, I am continually looking for what works for me, but focusing on the things that lend a hand with my individuality – sticking to the basics, yet building on creativity and appeal.